This post is part of the Holy Week 2013 series.
John’s gospel tells us that six days before the Passover that would signal the death of Jesus, he ate dinner at Lazarus’ house and that, while there, Mary took a flask of expensive oil and washed his feet with the oil and her hair (John 12:1-7).
Judas said the oil was worth three hundred denarii.
In Luke’s account of what happened, we learn that Mary “stood at his feet weeping” and then washed his feet with both the oil and her tears. We also learn she had been forgiven much by Jesus. Luke refers to “what manner of woman this is” and says she was known as “a sinner” (Luke 7:36-50). The people around him were astounded at her actions and wanted him to watch out for a woman of her caliber of sinfulness touching him.
And yet there he was, defending her.
And there she was, weeping at his feet. Wiping them with her tears and her hair. Pouring upon them some very costly oil.
I think this happens when we experience profound love. At least, I know that’s the response I have. I can’t help but cry at the feet of Jesus for what I’ve received — and continue to receive — from him.
In my life, I’ve been through some intense seasons of pain followed, eventually, by the experience of being healed. Every single instance of healing happened in the presence of Jesus. It came through an encounter with his love, which is infinite. Patient. Full of embrace. There on the floor with us.
When we, in our deepest experiences of brokenness, are loved like that, we fall at his feet in worship. We feel utter amazement, awe, and thankfulness. We want to love him in return. He becomes the most beautiful vision we have ever known.
And we want to give him everything.
Even our tears. Even the most costly thing we have.